During the 13 months that I was non-stop working, where I was only sleeping four or five hours a night, I was experiencing tension in places in my body I had never felt tension before. I mean sure, I’d had stiffness, but to actually feel boulders between my shoulder blades was insane! There were times I would be sitting at my computer and my back would seize, where I could no longer even move my fingers – it was out of control.
Between the lack of sleep, the lack of hydration, the lack of general movement, and then add all of the stress, all of the anxiety, all of the pressure that I was receiving and certainly putting on myself, it was all compounding into not just mental issues, certainly lots of mental issues, but to physical issues. After a good 13 months of that, I realized I needed to incorporate self-care.
Today, I still schedule self-care. Now at that time, for me what really worked was having a monthly membership so I could get a massage. I probably really needed to go every week for a year, to get those boulders removed between my shoulder blades! But at least once a month I had it on my calendar, so that I would go in for a massage. Again, that was physical and mental recovery for me. I made sure that at the end of that appointment, I was already booking the next one, making sure it was on my calendar – finding places that I could put self-care ahead of other things that were going on.
I realize you want to put other people, other things, other priorities ahead of your own, but that will only last for so long. At some point you’re going to suffer, suffer beyond potentially a place where you can get yourself back. So today, start scheduling your self-care. Now, I mentioned that I had a monthly membership for a massage. Today, I don’t necessarily need that level of self-care. For now, it comes more in what I like to call “me moments.” So mine happen more often every day.
Every day I sit down quietly and I’m drinking a cup of coffee while reading a book. I make sure that every week I have my exercise – that’s a “me moment” for me, I love to exercise. I make sure that after I eat lunch, when the weather’s nice, I’m going outside, taking a few laps just to breathe in some good air. But it’s scheduled; I literally already know that these things are happening. They are on my calendar.
So make sure that whether it’s five minutes, it’s once a month, once a week, or a vacation that you might be taking every few months or twice per year – whatever you need for self-care, it’s very unique. Everybody recovers in different ways. So whatever you need, make that decision, figure it out, and schedule it. Make it a priority by putting it on your calendar. Comment below, what is your favorite way to self-care? Give us some ideas. And then, is it on your calendar? If not, let’s get it scheduled today!